Some may wonder, out of all the languages in the world, why Korean?
It all started when I was 13 years old. I went into a local hair shop and I saw this lady. To my ignorance, I thought she was Chinese. So I asked her, “How would you write Erica in Chinese?” She smiled, then said, “I don’t know because I’m not Chinese.” I felt embarrassed, lol. However, I became curious. “What are you, then?” Again, she smiled.
“I’m Korean.” Honestly, (again, my ignorance) I never thought about all the other Asian countries despite being taught about it in school. She tore a piece of reciept paper and wrote my name 에리카 . That was the day that I met Mrs. Kum S. Kitzmiller, whom I affectionately called, Mrs. Yim. (I honestly do not know why). She was the first person that taught me Korean. I used to sit behind the counter at her store and get my Korean lessons of the day before attending my Tae Kwon Do class.
As I got older, I slowly stopped learning and speaking the language altogether. I got married, started a family, attended/graduated culinary school. Just basic life stuff.
One day, I got introduced to KPop, simply by browsing on YouTube. I was in my late 20s at the time. I would listen to Korean Pop music from time to time, but it wasn’t enough to persuade me to learn the language again. It was until I was 31 that I began picking up the book to relearn the language.
I love Korean food. Yum yum yum. I love their culture. It’s on my bucket list to visit South Korea someday. Where in S. Korea? I don’t care where: the city and/or countryside. I want to embrace it all. Now, I’m not what they consider a “Koreaboo” [Google it]. But, I do enjoy watching a good K-Drama.
So, I hope to get fluent in Hangul someday or even be able to have a basic conversation with someone. Anyhow, travel on my journey with me and we can learn the language and culture together.